Now on to The Next Big Thing....
Laura Munson, NYT Bestselling author of This Is Not the Story You Think It Is: A Season of Unlikely Happiness, recently tagged me and invited me to participate in The Next Big Thing, a sort of blog hop that has been hitting blogs all over the place, so much so that it was difficult to find someone who has not yet heard of it or taken part in it! I had the great privilege to meet Laura while she was on book tour for her debut memoir (above) about a time in her life when her marriage and everything around her appeared to unraveling and how she made a decision, in spite of it all, to be happy. I loved the book and read it in two sittings. Laura now leads writing workshops nationally and internationally. You can read more about Laura's retreats here. Laura also blogs here.
So Laura has handed me this "writer's torch" and I'm meant to pass it on, but first I must also answer a few questions about my Next Big Thing or, in other words, my next book! I have several books in the wings, but 365 Lessons will be my next one. So here it goes....
What is the working title of your book?
365 Lessons: How I Found my Voice, Got an Agent and a Book Deal While Blogging Every Single Day for One Year
Where did the idea come from for the book?
The entire book presented itself to me in the form of lessons I wrote on my blog from January 1, 2010-December 31, 2010. I had no idea, at the time, where this year of blogging would take me and how hard it would be to blog
I blogged through pain, fear, lethargy, rejection, boredom, hunger, insomnia and happiness, excitement and bliss too. I blogged when there was absolutely nothing to say, because I had committed myself to it.
I blogged about commitment and focus too.
I realized that lessons could be found everywhere. I found them in fortune cookies, in billboards on my way to work, in a cup of tea or something a stranger said to me. I had no idea that I would find my greatest teachers right in front of me.
I wrote my first book, Lessons from the Monk I Married, a book about my 15-year journey with my husband, while simultaneously writing these 365 Lessons. My entire journey from blog to book is in those 365 Lessons. (By the way, most of my original 365 Lessons have been removed from this blog as they will be available in book form in the not-so-distant future, but you can still get a sneak peek of some of those lessons here)
What genre does your book fall under?
Memoir/Blogging/Book Writing/Self Help/Inspiration
Which actors would you choose to play your character in your movie rendition?
I don't see 365 Lessons as a movie. However, Julie and Julia was a big success, so you never know! I do think my memoir, Lessons from the Monk I Married, a love story about my 15-year journey with my husband, a former Korean Buddhist monk would make a beautiful movie! Not sure who would play the characters? I'd have to think about that a little more.
What is the one-sentence synopsis of your book?
365 days of doing anything is a L-O-N-G time, with no guarantee of knowing what curve balls or stumbling blocks life might throw at you preventing you from making it to the end, but Katherine Jenkins did exactly that in 2010 when she wrote 365 Lessons on her blog, chronicling her journey to finding her voice, getting an agent and eventually landing a book deal for her first memoir, Lessons from the Monk I Married.
Will your book be self published or represented by an agency?
I have great faith that my lovely agent will find a wonderful home for this book with an amazing publisher!
How long did it take you to write the first manuscript?
What other books would you compare this story to within your genre?
Julie and Julia or 365 Thank Yous
What else about the book might pique the reader's interest?
This book is for anyone who has ever had a dream. It's an inspirational book about how small steps in the right direction can lead one to one's dream even without knowing what's beyond each step. It's about moving out of the comfort zone into the unknown. It's about keeping commitments and following through to the end despite all challenges and obstacles.
Now I must pass the torch on to fellow writers/bloggers. I'm very inspired by the three writers/bloggers below:
Becky Jain is a communications specialist with a passion for social media, currently working with the United Nations. After graduating from college, she spent many years living abroad. She is working on a memoir of these experiences in France, the UK and India dealing with gender, spirituality and a quest for belonging. She lives with her Indian husband of seven years in Astoria, New York where she's active in the local Queens writing community. She blogs at www.beckyblab.com and tweets from @bexband.
Allison Ellis is a Seattle-based freelance writer, aspiring author, and mother of two. Her essays and articles have appeared in Redbook, Working Mother, Fodor's Travel Guides, NBC, MediaPost, Red Tricycle, Parent Map, This I Believe, and The Seattle Times. Read more of her work at www.allisonellis.com. Her new blog, www.widowinaspeedo.com, focuses on "wacky widow wisdom" when it comes to love, marriage, death, grief, and other all-around good times.
Dr. Jody Stanislaw is the author of a brand new captivating book called HUNGER, an Adventurous Journey of Finding Peace Within. Her book offers readers an exhilarating account of the amazing stories she encountered while working at a holistic health spa in Thailand. The many life lessons she shares throughout the book leave readers feeling empowered and inspired.
Dr. Jody is also a naturopathic doctor. She received her doctorate degree at one of the best holistic medical schools in the country located in Seattle and has helped hundreds of patients transform their health from flailing to fabulous. She is not only well trained professionally, but at the age of 7, she was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes and as a result, has been a diligent student of health and well-being her entire life.